This course is studied 100% online
31st October 2021
Payment plans available
See our 'Fees and funding' section for full course fees and the options available to help fund your studies
What our students say
I’m impressed with the support I’ve received during my foundation degree. For this reason, and to fulfil my aspirations of becoming a teacher, I have chosen ARU to extend my studies to a BA degree.
My course has given me the skills and confidence to make changes and improvements in my place of work and understand the theory behind the process.
About your course
Do you want to work with young children? Or maybe you already are? This exciting foundation degree can help you start or advance a rewarding career. It could also help you into further qualifications and even top-up to a Bachelor degree or continue to a teaching degree.
Working with children is exciting, fun, and incredibly rewarding. Helping them to learn through the experience of new activities, and facilitating their interest in new concepts, means that you will play an important role in their development. This requires specialist knowledge in early years education, and key skills in planning, practice and communication.
This online degree is designed to help you develop these skills in your place of work, while you learn, together with understanding the policies and practices of the subject, for the benefit of your personal development, and your contribution within your place of work.
You'll learn about the education sector as well as child development, play, safeguarding and equality. There's a strong focus on issues that are currently affecting early years and education services. Under the guidance of a mentor, you'll undertake work placements and record your progress in a professional development portfolio. There are no exams; you will be assessed throughout the course with essays, a reflective diary, reports, presentations, and contribution to web discussions.
Benefits to you
- You'll develop a wide range of practical and analytical skills.
- You'll improve your ability to think critically about your work.
- Your studies and assignments will reflect the setting you work in
- It will open a wide range of career options to you.
Benefits to your organisation
- The course has professional recognition.
- You'll be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of Early Years contexts within which the widening children's workforce operate.
- You'll be familiar with the policies and practices of early years education.
- You'll be encouraged to critically analyse contemporary theories and empirical evidence in the area.
This course will open up a number of career options. You’ll be able to apply for roles in nursery work, school support and playwork. It will also be an advantage if you want to do further study, such as topping up to a BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies in just one year.
The course has professional recognition. It takes into account the Children's Workforce Development Council and the Early Years Professional Framework.
Modules and assessment
Due to the structure of this course, there will be instances where you will study two modules simultaneously during a trimester. You will be supported by your tutors to help manage your workload and assessment deadlines.
Please contact one of our advisers to discuss the pacing of this course and the options available to match your circumstances.
Learning and Development
This module introduces you to your own learning as well as children’s and links to existing theory. Explore the difference between learning and development and consider the influence of adults on children’s learning. The key topics will be: human development, understanding learning, study skills and the roles of parents and key persons.
You’ll be introduced to essential research skills relating to children and learn about the importance of linking theory to your practice. The aim is for you to develop skills in child observation and apply general research methods to childhood studies. You'll be expected to work in small groups and share your experience and ideas with your class. The key topics will be: research methods, ethics involved in working with children, types of observation and studying children.
Play, Health and Well-being
The link between lifestyle factors such as activity levels, diet and health is becoming increasingly clear, and greater importance is being placed on the need for children to access outdoor environments. It is crucial to get children making choices and enjoying a healthy balanced diet and active lifestyle from as young an age as possible. Play is recognised as being crucial to children's physical, mental, social and emotional well-being, yet opportunities and encouragement for free play are becoming increasingly limited. You’ll consider children’s well-being and how it relates to their rights. You’ll learn how well-being can be supported through healthy eating, regular physical activity and a play based environment. The key topics will be: well-being, healthy eating and exercise, outdoor play and forest schools.
In this module you’ll explore children’s welfare and well-being. You’ll learn about the complexities attached to the notion of risk, child abuse, protection and safeguarding. This module will offer a comprehensive cover of English legislation, policy and procedures for keeping children safe from abuse. You will gain an understanding of the range of provision available to support children’s needs. The key topics will be: child protection, support and intervention, policy and legislation, multi-disciplinary working and welfare and well-being.
Work-based Learning 1 Professional Practice
You will identify a specific aspect of practice to develop. Using an 'Action Inquiry' model, you will then plan a change strategy, implement the change and evaluate its effectiveness. This model of personal professional development will enable you to understand your workplace by observing, developing and carrying out an action plan to effect change and improvement in practice. You will develop valuable workplace skills in IT, communication, presentation, reflection and analysis.
Supporting Children's Learning
This module is about the ways in which children play and learn and the means by which adults can mediate and support their experience. You’ll discuss pedagogic strategies and learn about the importance of creative practices and children learning through play. Different early years’ curricula (Steiner Waldorf, Montessori method, Experiential Education, High Scope, Reggio Emilia and Te Whariki) will be compared and contrasted with England’s curriculum. The key topics will be: early years’ curricula, learning through play, creative learning and pedagogy as well as documenting care and learning.
In this module, you'll discuss disability, differences and special educational needs in relation to debates on inclusion and exclusion, needs and rights, and the importance of seeing every child as an individual. You’ll explore different cultural practices to enable an empathetic understanding of how to help all children feel welcome in a setting. Theories for this module are drawn from different backgrounds such as psychology, sociology and education. The key topics will be: history and language of inclusion, cultural differences and EAL, family structures and lifestyles, policy and legislation as well as special educational needs.
Work-based Learning 2 – Professional Practice
You’ll be encouraged to explore your professional practice, along the strands developed previously as a source of learning. You’ll be expected to demonstrate a greater degree of autonomy in the management of your learning and demonstrate a more detailed knowledge of relevant theories.
As you move through the course, we’ll check your progress regularly to make sure you’re achieving milestones, and getting any extra support you may need. You'll be assessed on one multiple choice exam and written work. This will include essays, a reflective diary, reports, presentations, web discussions and a professional development portfolio.
Meet your tutors
"I'm thrilled to lead Anglia Ruskin's professionally recognised Foundation Degree in Early Years and Education. This course will enable students to balance flexible study with their work, taking steps towards a fulfilling and varied career in Early Years."
Mallika is an experienced member of staff who has led and taught on a range of early childhood programmes, including undergraduate and postgraduate courses. The curriculum of these courses draw extensively from (national) Early Childhood Studies (ECS) degree benchmark statements and she is also a member of the ECS degrees network. She is currently leading Foundation Degree in Early Years, Play work and Education.
Her research is primarily participatory in nature where she has been working together with young children in nursery and primary schools, in understanding their views of the learning environments. She has published a number of articles and chapters in books and academic journals; edited a book on children's rights; and also presented her work in various national and international conferences. Her current research is in higher education, where she is using various participatory approaches of working in partnership with students, to develop pedagogical spaces. She is also currently engaged in a collaborative 'creative writing through the arts' project, with colleagues, where they are working with primary schools in Essex to integrate arts into children's writing.
How you'll study
Our Early Years and Education FdA is studied 100% online.
You’ll study through Canvas, our world-class online Learning Management System (LMS), which can be accessed from your phone, pc or tablet at home or on the move. Canvas provides instant access to study materials, forums, and support from tutors and classmates, as well as enabling easy submission of your assignments.
On successful completion of your studies you’ll be invited to attend a graduation ceremony on campus. If attending the ceremony in person is not possible then we’ll arrange to have your certificate sent to you.
To help you land your dream job, our Employability Service will work with you throughout your time at ARU and after you graduate.
- careers advice, including one-to-one online and telephone appointments with our experienced advisers
- help with your CV, job searches, applications and interview preparation
- an online portal packed with useful careers resources
- our Employability Programme, which helps you hone the skills employers say they want in graduates.
- Level 3 Childcare qualification.
- GCSE grade C or above in English Language.
- Experience working in the Early Years sector
- If English is not your first language you will be expected to demonstrate a certificated level of proficiency of at least IELTS 6.0 (Academic level) or equivalent English Language qualification, as recognised by Anglia Ruskin University.
- You'll need Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) clearance in order to study this course.
- UCAS Tariff points acquired from BTEC Level 3 Diplomas are accepted.
- Access to HE Diplomas at overall Pass grade are accepted.
- International Baccalaureate Diploma with a minimum of 24 points is accepted.
- UCAS Tariff points from the Irish Leaving Certificate are accepted.
- UCAS Tariff points from Scottish Highers are accepted.
- UCAS Tariff points from Scottish Advanced Highers are accepted.
- 48 UCAS Tariff Points from A level (or equivalent).
As a distance learner, you'll also need a suitable computer with internet connection, together with sufficient IT competence to make effective use our online learning management system (LMS) with high-speed internet and email.
Fees & funding
The full tuition fee for this course is £9,400.
The tuition fees you pay each year for the full Early Years and Education FdA will be £2,350 in year one and £3,525 in years 2 and 3. The course is studied over 3 years.
Accredited Prior Learning may reduce the tuition fees. This will be confirmed once your application has been submitted.
Government-backed part time student loans are available to cover the cost of studying this course. These are subject to eligibility and terms and conditions.
We offer payment by instalments, so you can spread the cost of studying with us.
For military students: You can use your ELCs towards this course. ARU is a recognised ELCAS provider (number 1007). Please contact your Learning Centre for details of ELC, eligibility and how to apply.
For more information on how you fund your studies please see our funding page.
31st October 2021